- formula 1 racing has named aston martin to supply its official medical-intervention (safety) car this season, a year in which the marque itself is back in f1 racing for the first time in more than 60 years.
- in honor of that new role, aston has released this roadgoing vantage f1 edition with similar upgrades to the track model, which will be available as a coupe or a roadster.
- the f1 edition will make it to the u.s. this summer and will be priced at about $20,000 above the regular aston martin vantage, in the $160,000 range.
after 25 years of using mercedes-amg models, formula 1 is changing supplier for its safety cars for this year. aston martin is taking the role, supplying both pace cars and medical-intervention vehicles, and the british sports-car maker has lost no time celebrating the connection with this roadgoing version, the vantage f1 edition, featuring many of the same upgrades as its track-only sister.
positioned above the existing vantage, the f1 edition will be available in both coupe and roadster form and will be available in the same aston martin green worn by both its safety-car sibling and the cars of aston’s formula 1 team, which was rebranded from racing point for this season. both gloss and satin paint finishes will be available, and buyers will be able to choose other colors. regardless of choice, a gray racing graphic runs from the front badge over the roof and the back of the car, although this can be deleted for anyone wanting a subtler look.
the f1 edition’s cabin is much closer to that of the regular vantage than the safety car, which of course is equipped with a roll cage and a fire extinguisher. black leather and gray microfiber upholstery is standard, with buyers able to choose contrasting trim in green, black, gray, or red. there is also an f1 logo on the side sills. as with the regular vantage, f1 buyers are going to suffer from the mild frustration of living with the the company’s outdated infotainment technology, which is based on the previous-generation mercedes system with a small non-touch display screen.
the f1 edition looks the part, but it also gets some worthwhile upgrades. like the official safety car, its twin-turbo 4.0-liter amg v-8 has been retuned to deliver an increase in power, output rising from 503 to 528 horsepower, although peak torque remains unchanged at 505 pound-feet. the standard eight-speed automatic gearbox has also been sharpened with reduced shift time, although claimed acceleration and top speed numbers are identical to those of the standard car with a claimed 3.5-second zero-to-60-mph time for the coupe and a 3.6-second zero-to-60-mph time for the roadster and top speeds of 195 mph and 190 mph, respectively. the unchanged top speed is impressive given the coupe's substantial rear wing and a full-width front splitter. aston hasn't said how much downforce the aerodynamic elements create, but says it has 440 pounds more than the regular vantage coupe.
suspension has also been tweaked for regular track use, with changes including stiffer rear springs and revised damper internals, which are claimed to improve body control over the high-speed crests and compressions common to hard track use. aston also says the car's front structural stiffness has been improved. unique 21-inch alloy wheels will be standard, a first for the vantage, with pirelli p zero tires with a rubber-band 30 aspect ratio at the rear. carbon-ceramic brakes will be optional on the coupe, but not the roadster.
the vantage f1 edition is available to pre-order and will reach the u.s. in the summer, priced starting from the equivalent of $162,000 for the coupe. that's a $20,000 supplement over the standard car. roadster pricing is not yet available.